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The Schmooze

Les Moonves — CBS Chief and Ben Gurion’s Great-Nephew — Accused of Sexual Misconduct

Leslie Moonves, the CEO of CBS, isn’t someone you’ll see in movie theaters or tabloids, but he is one of the biggest power brokers in Hollywood. The Hollywood Reporter has found that Moonves will be accused of sexual misconduct Friday afternoon in a reported piece in the New Yorker by celebrated investigative journalist Ronan Farrow.

Though the New Yorker refused to comment on the piece and it has not gone live on its digital site as of the publication of this article, The Hollywood Reporter learned that it will cite accusations of Moonves’ non-consensual behavior, with an instance as far back as 20 years ago, as well as others in more recent times. CBS has already stated that the network will be investigating these claims. Independent of the alleged Moonves misconduct story, Moonves is currently embroiled in a major battle over control of the company with the CBS vice-chair Shari Redstone, which has divided the board. CBS stock has tumbled since news that Farrow’s story would break on Friday.

Bizarrely, Moonves, who began his career as an actor, is the great-nephew of Israel’s first Prime Minister, David Ben Gurion. He revealed at an honors ceremony this March at the Simon Weisenthal Center that his grandfather was the sister of Paula Ben Gurion, the great visionary’s wife.

These are bizarre, uncomfortable times. We hope the truth will emerge — for the sake of any of the women Moonves allegedly harmed, and for the sake of Ben Gurion’s memory.

Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at or on Twitter @jeanvaljenny




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